Arena Trap has been identified as a potentially banworthy ability in the SS OU metagame; trapping with Dugtrio has a large impact on gameplay in the current metagame. Switching is viewed as a fundamental part of how we play competitive Pokemon. Seeing as Arena Trap restricts the ability to switch for anything that is grounded, it should be no surprise that a capable abuser of this ability can be deemed a problem in the context of the metagame. Dugtrio has been one of the best Pokemon in the metagame in recent months; it is able to fit on to balance archetypes and help eliminate common Pokemon in order to help support teammates. This dynamic has been viewed as problematic historically, but we must examine Arena Trap specifically in the SS OU metagame to determine its banworthiness (or lack thereof).
Dugtrio tends to run two sets in the current metagame: Focus Sash and Choice Band. Previously, the latter was seen as superior and saw more usage, but recently the former has risen to prominence. While it is true that Focus Sash Dugtrio is more reliant on support or positioning such as hazard removal or set information, it also is able to trap a wider array of Pokemon, including a number of top threats that are new to the tier.
Honing in on the Focus Sash variant of Dugtrio, users of it are able to eliminate prominent threats such as Kyurem, simply through switching in on any attack and then taking it out with a single Reversal, or Zeraora, after a pivot from Teleport or U-turn allowing for it to come in unscathed. A trend in these interactions is that the field must be cleared of hazards, making reliable Defog or Rapid Spin support mandatory for Focus Sash Dugtrio. Fortunately, this is very possible in the current metagame and using Endure can allow it to be brought down to 1 HP for Reversal as a quick fix to the hazard control issue if need be. It is true that some specific situations, such as the aforementioned Zeraora interaction, require fairly precise pivoting or something to die in order for Dugtrio to revenge kill the threat, which is also worth noting. Dugtrio's fragile nature can hold it back in some situations. With this said, it is able to take advantage of a lot of commonly provoked situations and remove Pokemon such as Tyranitar, Excadrill, Cinderace, Terrakion, and Toxapex, barring Scald burn.
Choice Band Dugtrio is also a strong option; it is able to take out various Pokemon from higher health and even eliminate a handful of walls that could otherwise hold teams together. In particular, Clefable that are not near max physical defense and Bold nature are 2HKOd by Dugtrio, a burn cannot save Toxapex from Earthquake 2HKOing, and Sylveon is 2HKOd with ease. Of course, there are also situations in which Choice Band Dugtrio is called on to handle the aforementioned Pokemon from the Focus Sash paragraph, but it is incapable of handling faster threats like Zeraora without Focus Sash, which can prove to be problematic. Choice Band Dugtrio also has the ability to revenge trap plenty of Pokemon in the context of games with some chip; this can be applied in countless different fashions depending on your team and your opponent's teams. Finally, there are also some less common ideas such as pairing Dugtrio with Trick + Iron Ball Clefable in order to cripple threats like Corviknight or Rotom-Heat, which can expand the scope of Dugtrio's trapping. Overall, Trick being common is quite good for Dugtrio.
While Dugtrio is the lone current abuser of this ability, Arena Trap is the subject of this suspect test. The OU Council decided on this focus because Arena Trap allows for the act of trapping to occur. We believe that this ability may not have a place in the SS OU metagame. We have reasonable cause to believe that Arena Trap could be deemed banworthy on any half-decent Pokemon that would receive it and have tiering precedent to back the decision to make the subject of the suspect test Arena Trap as opposed to Dugtiro. This allows for us to avoid having to address the issue again moving forward if it were to come to that.
Additionally, Arena trap is the same as Shadow Tag in many ways, which was banned from OU previously on the same terms as those outlined above with regards to mass trapping being problematic. Seeing as Pokemon that are not Grounded make up only a fraction of the metagame, this case happens to be quite similar. Even though Dugtrio is the only commonplace abuser of Arena Trap at the moment, the suspect test is asking whether or not this sort of wide-scale trapping ability has a place in the OU metagame. Please note that any posts disagreeing with the subject of the suspect test instead of discussing the banworthiness (or lack thereof) of the suspect will be deleted and potentially infracted.
60% pro-ban majority (93 ban votes) is required for a ban, and the outcome will not be changed by more votes. Thus, Arena Trap is now banned from SS OU.